Frequently Asked Questions
How do I apply to the Internship/Master's program?
You can find the application forms on the web site: Apply to the Program
Where can I find information on the Summer Research Experience
for Undergraduate Program and other Undergraduate Programs?
On the Undergraduate Page
Is financial support available for Graduate Students?
Yes, through the Federal Financial Aid Program, and also through the MSI
How do I apply to the Graduate Program?
Students interested in graduate study in Materials Science should apply
to the graduate program in Physics or Chemistry
How many people are in the UO Materials Science Institute?
We have18 research-active faculty and approximately 50 graduate students
and post-doctoral associates.
How long will it take to get a Ph. D. in Chemistry or Physics
Typically, it takes five years.
How much time do graduate students spend teaching?
Teaching for at least one year is required and usually done during the
first year. The time actually spent including all aspects of teaching
such as preparation, class time, office hours and grading is approximately
10 to 20 hours a week.
How much time is spent in the lab?
During the first year, students must balance lab time with classes and
teaching. After the first year, students spend the majority of their time
in lab. How many hours you spend depends in part on the expectations of
your advisor, but it also depends on the efficiency and productivity of
the student. Research time should be considered at least a full-time job
if you expect to complete your graduate work in a reasonable amount of
How much is the stipend - and will it allow me to support myself
during graduate school?
Based on information we've gathered from our undergraduates going on to
graduate school elsewhere, our stipend level is right in the ballpark
with what other schools are offering Ph.D. students. Current levels are
more than adequate to support a student in graduate school. Read more
about housing below.
In addition to a stipend, Ph.D. students receive a tuition waiver and
health insurance during the academic year.
Is it difficult to find affordable housing in Eugene?
While the standard of living in Eugene is probably typical of many college
towns, we have had a huge increase in rental properties in the past five
years. As a result, rental properties are relatively easy to find and
the competition among rental property managers is great. In addition,
the University offers off-campus student housing, which graduate students
are eligible for. This year's prices start at $290 for a one bedroom.
You can find out more about University housing at the housing website.
Generally, it is easy to find affordable housing close to campus in the
summer and early fall (before most students arrive for classes). After
that, it is still easy to find affordable housing; it just might be farther
out from campus. Keep in mind, however, that Eugene is a relatively small
town. Two to three miles out is considered a good distance from campus,
even though it's still within walking or biking distance.
Is it easy to get around town without a car?
All UO students have access to the city-wide bus system free of charge.
You just show your student ID when you board. Buses can drop you right
on campus from all over town. Eugene is also one of the most bike-friendly
cities in the U.S. There are bike paths all over town, many of which are
separate from automobile traffic. Many students do not own cars.
Are there opportunities available to work in the summer?
Doctoral students can begin working in a lab the summer before they begin
classes. Students may also be interested in the PhD Internship program.
For some students, this provides a way to get settled into graduate life
before classes are added to the mix.
How is the weather in Eugene?
Summers in Eugene are worth waiting for. With temperatures in the 70s,
80s and 90s and very low humidity, the summers in Oregon are some of the
most beautiful you will find anywhere in the world. Winters are mild and
wet, with sunbreaks in between. Average winter temperatures are 53 degrees.
Rain in the winter provides for the lush green of summer - and a chance
to get work done in the lab.